TN and Indian Railways women reach knock-out stage
Is the fizz missing in the Uttarakhand team without its two new recruits Yadwinder Singh and Vishesh Bhriguvanshi? Though it is too early to say, the signs are already visible. A resurgent Punjab made Uttarakhand look like a novice with an emphatic 78-66 win in a Group ‘B' men's contest of the 62nd senior National basketball championships at the Nehru Indoor Stadium here on Sunday.
Punjab executed its plan to a nicety. Its basic idea was to strengthen the defence and score as and when an opportunity came its way. This ploy worked really well as Uttarakhand's pivot Murali Krishna was curtailed to a large extent.
As the frequency of its scoring started coming down, Uttarakhand panicked. From 8-1 within four minutes of the start and 22-12 at the end of the first quarter, Punjab had already proved a point or two.
Amritpal Singh (Jr.) and Amjyot Singh were the pillars for Punjab in defence in the first and second quarters. Murali pushed himself hard to jump and shoot, but he wasn't given any leeway. Trideep Rai couldn't impose his presence while Mohit Bhandari, the ball-handler, failed to put up a good show.
Jagdeep Singh (19), the top-scorer, and Talwinderjit Singh (12) made a mockery of Uttarakhand's defence with eye-catching two-pointers; especially the latter with a couple of slam dunks.
Easy for Delhi
Defending champion Indian Railways eked out an 84-75 victory over Kerala in a Group ‘A' match. Gagandeep Singh (34) and Dilawar Singh (12) ensured Earlier, Delhi overcame Chhattisgarh 75-58 in another Group ‘B' men's match. Delhi displayed tenacity under pressure against a young outfit to emerge triumphant. Ajay Pratap Singh put pressure on the Chhattisgarh defence with his speed and impeccable shooting. He was instrumental in Chhattisgarh gaining the upperhand in the second quarter (30-29). V. Dahiya was the star performer for Delhi with 20 points.
Indian Railways (Group ‘A') and Tamil Nadu (‘B') women's teams reached the knock-out stage with three straight victories. Railways thrashed Madhya Pradesh 106-38, Tamil Nadu beat AP 72-61.
The results: Men: Level I: Group ‘A': Indian Railways 84 (Gagandeep Singh 34, Dilawar Singh 12) bt Kerala 75 (Abhilash 21, R. Manoj 23, Ajith 12). Group ‘B': Punjab 78 (Amjyot Singh 15, Gurkirpal Singh 12, Talwinderjit Singh 14, Amritpal Singh (Jr.) 12, Jagdeep Singh 19) bt Uttarakhand 66 (M. Anoop 14, Desraj 11, Trideep Rai 23, Murali Krishna 14). Delhi 75 (P. Doval 12, V. Dahiya 20, V. Kaushin 17, P. Kumar 11) bt Chhattisgarh 58 (M. Sharma 11, A. Singh 14). Level II: ‘F': Assam 63 (Vinod 18, Virender 15) bt. Puducherry 37 (Kevin Varghese 13, Naveen Kanth 10). Women: Level I: Group ‘A': Indian Railways 106 (Renjini Peter 19, Anju Lakra 17) bt MP 38 (Manisha Pawar 12). Punjab 66 (Kiranjit Kaur 31, Ranwinder Kaur 15) bt Maharashtra 62 (Shireen Limaye 24, Aviya Dharave 11).
Group ‘B': Delhi 76 (Pratima Singh 25, Prashanti Singh 18) bt Rajasthan 14.
Tamil Nadu 72 (Alagu Tamil Mozhi 19, Neena Hareendran 19, Apporva 16) bt Andhra Pradesh 61 (Aashna 23, Manda Meshram 17).
Level II: ‘E': Puducherry 60 (R.S. Karpagam 16, M. Manjula 11, L. Sreedevi 10) bt Odisha 23 (Namrata Singh 11).
Keywords: senior National basketball championships